Is iPad Fast Charging Safe? Don’t Worry: It Won’t Hurt!
Tired of waiting for your favorite tablet to recover from all that time you spend watching movies or playing games? iPad fast charging may be the answer, but if you’re like many consumers, then it can also raise questions: Is fast charging your iPad safe? Is making the switch to a new charger really worth the trouble?
Fortunately, you don’t have to worry. Here’s everything you need to know about this safe way to top off your tablet.
iPad Fast Charging Explained
Fast charging has become increasingly popular, and today’s consumer devices are designed to recharge quicker than ever before. But how does it all work?
Voltage and Current Explained
When you plug your tablet into a charger, there are two main factors to consider. The voltage, measured in volts or V, represents the charger’s potential, or ability to move electricity. The current, measured in amps or A, is the amount of electricity flowing from the charger to the battery over time.
Of course, life isn’t quite so simple for consumers. Most manufacturers classify their charger hardware based on its power, given in watts or W. Since the power equals the voltage times the current, it’s a fair indicator of which chargers are more likely to get your battery back up and running fastest. Always be sure to check the current and voltage as well as the power.
The Battery — Charging and Discharging
Your phone’s battery can output its own voltage and current — that’s how it powers your device. The battery is also designed to recharge when it’s supplied with a specific amount of current delivered at a predetermined voltage.
How does this work? Your phone’s battery contains chemical compounds that possess electric charges. When you’re using your tablet, the internal movement of these charge-carrying ions produces the voltage and current that the device depends on. When it’s recharging, the depleted carriers accept energy and travel back to their starting positions.
Will Fast Charging Work With My Device?
Device manufacturers build their hardware to meet certain standards or commonly accepted rules. For instance, when your tablet looks up a website or downloads an app, it uses secure transmission standards to ensure that nobody steals your identity along the way.
Charging Standards Simplified
The charging standards that smart devices support determine how quickly they can bounce back from dead batteries. Inside your iPad, a dedicated charging circuit regulates the voltage and current carefully to ensure that the battery gets what it needs to recover. In most cases, this equates to the standard 5V, 2A, 10W supply that standard USB charging ports provide.
In tablets made to handle fast charging, this circuit increases the current and voltage, letting the battery absorb energy faster. This hardware usually supports a variety of power levels — When you pair such devices with the right fast chargers, you’ll likely notice a considerable boost in speed.
Choosing Quick Charging Accessories
Which charging standards should you look for? It all depends on the device, and it’s important to remember that they’re not all interchangeable. For instance, even if your iPad model supports quick charging, it might not work with a smart charger that falls short of the appropriate power requirements.
Is My Tablet Compatible?
As of spring 2019, Apple’s iPad Pro models all supported fast charging. Although other iPads lack the necessary control circuitry to refresh their batteries as rapidly, they still do pretty well with more powerful voltages and currents. Of course, you’ll have to buy a beefier charger to reap the rewards:
The Official Option for Apple Device Fast Charging
Fortunately, Apple has made it easy to tell which charger you need — At the time of this writing, the company only offered one high-powered model. This 30W device works over USB-C, making it compatible with not only your iPad but also your phone, MacBook or MacBook Air.
Be aware that Apple’s 30W fast charger doesn’t come with the charging cable. You’ll have to grab that separately — You can take your pick of a USB-C to USB-C or USB-C to Lightning connector.
The Third-party Method for Fast Charging Your iPhone, iPad
What if you don’t feel like spending a bunch of money on the official Apple charger? Using an off-brand alternative is usually fine, provided that the device
Comes from a reputable source
Has at least the power capacity of Apple’s 30W model
Is tested to function properly with your device?
Are you feeling worried about working with non-Apple products? Don’t sweat it. It’s important to realize that fast-charging technology has been around for a while. With the earliest official Quick Charge standards dating back to about 2013, product engineers and users around the globe have had more than enough time to work out the kinks.
One of the nice things about the third-party fast charger option is that it lets you take advantage of a far broader range of product designs and features. For instance, many fast chargers contain battery banks that make it easy to recharge quickly on the go even if you’re nowhere near an outlet.
Many companies, such as Anker, ESR, RavPower, and iClever, offer a range of attractive options that include features such as extra USB ports for multi-device charging. Others significantly exceed the 30 W standard, which could potentially increase the speed at which your battery tops off. Since each tablet has its own internal charge controller, you don’t have to worry about giving a device more juice than it can handle.
Choosing an iPad Air Fast Charger
What makes a good fast charger for your iPad mini, Air, Pro or other models? Search for something that features not only high-powered output but also intelligent high-speed charging. In other words, if a product’s description doesn’t explicitly say that it can perform fast charging, then you should look elsewhere.
You can save yourself a lot of hassle by digging through the product description to find your specific device model. Although not every manufacturer discloses which hardware it’s tested its chargers with, those that do make it much easier to avoid mishaps — such as buying an expensive accessory only to discover that it doesn’t work or has the wrong plug shape.
What’s the key takeaway if you can’t get enough of your iPad Air? iPad Air fast charging is a safe, established technology. It’s not going to hurt your device, so why wait forever to get back to enjoying your favorite content and activities?